Days of Palestine – Ramallah
The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights said in a report today that the murder of Palestinian youth Jamil Abu Ayyash, 31, in the occupied West Bank village of Beita on Friday was a result of the excessive use of force by the Israeli occupation army, amounting to a war crime.
According to PCHR’s investigations, the Israeli occupation army directly targeted the Abu Ayyash in the head at a close range of 50 meters, without any justification or posing threat to the soldiers’ lives, which, according to the report, proves unjustifiable lenient shooting standards in the Israeli army in disregard of Palestinian civilians’ lives.
According to PCHR’s investigations, at approximately 12:15 on Friday, 10 December, a peaceful protest took off in the Beita Park, east of the village, where IOF established “Avatar” settlement outpost 8 months ago. The protestors raised Palestinian flags and chanted slogans against the Israeli occupation and settlers.
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When they arrived, they were surprised with Israeli soldiers taking their positions near the Mount. The soldiers immediately fired teargas canisters at the protesters, and clashes broke out.
The protesters threw stones at the soldiers, who continued to fire live and rubber-coated bullets as well as teargas canisters at the protesters, and the clashes expanded to reach the area surrounding the Mount.
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During the clashes, which continued until around 15:00, Abu Ayyash was shot with a bullet in the head and sustained critical wounds while others suffocated due to teargas inhalation. As a result, the man was taken to the field hospital in Beita village and then moved to Rafidia Governmental Hospital in Nablus, where he was announced dead at 16:00.
This victim is the ninth Palestinian shot dead by Israeli troops during suppression of peaceful protests in Beita village since the establishment of the settlement outpost.
“These crimes reflect the excessive use of force in circumstances where there was no imminent threat to the soldiers’ lives and prove Israeli lenient shooting standards against the Palestinian civilians,” the report said.
PCHR urged the international community to act immediately to stop the Israeli crimes, and renewed its call on the High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention to fulfill their obligations under Article 1; i.e. to prosecute persons alleged to commit grave breaches of the Fourth Geneva Convention and guarantee Palestinian civilians’ right to protection in the occupied Palestinian Territory.